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Masterful Manzi Takes Crowd-Pleasing Victory on Saturday in Imola

Masterful Manzi Takes Crowd-Pleasing Victory on Saturday in Imola

Stefano Manzi (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) took a home win in front of a passionate Italian crowd at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari di Imola on Saturday, his second victory of the season.

Saturday morning’s Superpole session saw Manzi take a front row start with third, and this stood him in good stead for a boiling hot Race 1. The Italian made the most of it, taking the race lead on Lap 1 and pulling a gap on his rivals. After a string of quick laps, Manzi was eventually able to extend his lead to two seconds, taming his aggressive style to stay calm and focused on the goal. A red flag on the final lap of the race handed victory and 25 points to the Ten Kate Racing rider, while his nearest title rival only managed third. Today’s victory in Imola marks Manzi’s second top step of the season and gave the Italian an excellent boost going into tomorrow’s action.

Nicholas Spinelli (VFT Racing WEBIKE Yamaha) also flew the Italian colours well in Race 1, finishing in a strong seventh place on his R6. Filippo Fuligni (Evan Bros. WorldSSP Yamaha Team) got a last-minute call up to replace the injured Andrea Mantovani, and he impressed with a great 11th place finish around Imola. While another replacement rider, Andy Verdoia (Yamaha Thailand Racing Team) also finished in the points with 14th. 

Fellow Yamaha riders Jorge Navarro (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha), Alvaro Diaz (Arco Yart Yamaha WorldSSP) and Valentin Debise (GMT94 Yamaha) had a Saturday to forget as they failed to finish the race, although all were declared fit for Sunday.



Stefano Manzi

I had a good start and did some overtakes in the first two chicanes. I took the lead and after that I was able to lead for every lap of the race. It was quite hard to keep my pace but I managed to. With the high temperatures it was tough, but I am very happy for myself and the team that we managed to take our second victory. We’ve also closed the gap in the championship a bit now, we need to remain focused. The team has worked very hard.